There always seems to be funny little side stories that never seem to make their way into some of the events that are covered on The Iowa Republican. From time to time it is my intention to write about them on in my Stomping Grounds blog. Here is what I’ve been keeping from you!
Ensign Refers to Blue Bunny as a “Small Company”
While visiting the Well Blue Bunny Ice Cream Parlor in Le Mars, Senator Ensign referred to Wells, the largest family-owned and managed dairy processor in the United States, as a small company. It’s very likely that Sen. Ensign didn’t see the new Blue Bunny headquarters and their production facilities until he left town. He came in from Sioux Center.
Ensign probably got the point when an employee asked if he would sign their guest book. Ensign signed just below Warren Buffett, who stopped in just a week earlier.
I arrived in Le Mars almost an hour and a half before the Ensign event was scheduled to start. As I pulled into the parking lot, a huge satellite truck was also finding a place to park. You could see the parlor workers looking out the windows at the truck.
Inside, I realized I wasn’t the only one who had arrived early. Mike Glover with the Associated Press had already commandeered the only booth with an electrical outlet nearby. He offered to share, but I was confident in the battery life of my laptop. I regretted that decision later on.
One of the bonuses of arriving early was that it gave an excuse to have a dish of ice cream. I opted for rocky road, Glover had strawberry shortcake, and Ensign, a self described ice cream addict, went for the bunny tracks.
What Not to Wear. A Chiefs Windbreaker?
This one is from a while ago. Dr. Herb London was one of the guest speakers at Congressman Steve King’s Defender of Freedom event earlier this spring. My wife and I drove Dr. London from Sioux City to the Omaha airport the following day.
I’m a firm believer in researching people that I’m going to be stuck in a car with for more than an hour. My extensive research (Google) just before meeting him for breakfast at the Hilton Garden Inn told me that he is the father of Stacy London of TLC’s What Not To Wear. The news rattled my wife, who immediately became concerned about her wardrobe, but my only clothing option was a Kansas City Chiefs windbreaker, so I chose not to worry about it.
My time with London in the car flew by. London owns a small piece of the Oneonta Tigers, an affiliate of the Detroit Tigers. Knowing he is from New York, at breakfast, I asked him if he was a Yankee or Mets fan. Once the words came out of my mouth I instantly knew that he was going to say the Dodgers. After the Dodgers left town, London had become a Mets fan, but now he roots for the Yankees because Carlos Delgado refuses to take the field for the National Anthem before games. My kind of guy.
London ran for Governor of New York on the Conservative Party ticket in 1994. New York politics is fascinating. I got the distinct impression that London is not a fan of George Pataki. One of the most interesting stories he shared was about Bill Kristol. Kristol, who is frequently seen on Fox News, was London’s intern at the Hudson Institute when he was younger. London and Kristol hit the streets of New York to purchase heroin to see if the price was going up or going down. Their research showed that the price was going down, meaning the war on drugs was ineffective. Apparently Kristol’s parents gave London a hard time about their son’s first assignment. Yes, the authorities knew and pre-approved what he was up to.
London was fascinating. It’s too bad people didn’t have the opportunity to learn more about him while in Iowa for Congressman King.
BVP = MIA?
I’ve visited Sioux City twice now to cover events since starting this website, once for King’s Defender of Freedom banquet, and the other for the American Future Fund’s events with Senator Ensign. I have yet to run into Bob Vander Plaats at any event I’ve attended up there.
I don’t really think it’s a big deal. Iowa is a large state, and someone is always serving up a pulled pork sandwich somewhere. I just find it a little odd that, where there are 400 at King’s fundraiser and 100 plus to see Ensign, you wouldn’t want to be there to work the room and been seen.
Pray for Ray
It was good to see former GOP Chairman Ray Hoffmann while in Sioux City on Monday. While many have criticized Ray in the past, it would be almost impossible to find a guy who has more love and appreciation of the Republican Party.
Ray recently was on the losing end with of a disagreement with a four wheeler. He told me that he was showing his grandkids what not to do. The handle bar came up and hit him in the eye, and he also injured some vertebras in his back. I believe he is scheduled for surgery today.
Ray’s serious injuries didn’t keep him away from his restaurant, Luciano’s. Hoffmann retired last year from Smith Barney where he was a stock broker. That didn’t mean Ray slowed down any. Instead, he expanded his restaurant business. Last June, Hoffmann employed nine people. Ray said he now employs 29- not bad in a poor economy. Ray’s pride and joy is his wine cellar. I have to admit, it would be a great place to gather with a small group of people.
Keep Ray and his family in your thoughts and prayers as he recovers, and if you are in Sioux City, have dinner at Luciano’s.
My wife and I are traveling to Canada to attend a wedding I’m in this weekend. The wedding is an hour or two north of Niagara Falls, so while we are up there, we plan to do the tourist thing. I’m looking forward to watching the fireworks over the falls on Sunday night.
blog comments powered by Disqus